Temple University Workers Protest Layoffs

University president greeted by protesters while leaving home in Rittenhouse

Temple president Ann Weaver Hart had a protest on her hands Wednesday. A group of staff and faculty members protested outside her home in Rittenhouse Square due to recent layoffs at the nation's 28th largest university, according to the Philadelphia Inquirer.
Eighteen employees were laid off last week, according to Paul Dannenfelser, Local 1723 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees president said.
The union is upset about the lack of notice layoffs were coming. They did not learn of the cutback details until May 26, Dannenfelser said. Employees were notified of their termination the very next day.
Although nine dismissed employees were rehired for other jobs at the school, the union is also concerned workers will lose their seniority, the paper reported.
There are reports laid off workers were escorted out of Temple building by security guards, which also enrages union leaders, the paper noted.
"They were treated cruelly," said Arthur Hochner, TAUP president.
But Temple tells a different story.

“To meet the reductions in the operation budget for the coming year, each college and department at Temple has taken specific steps, and in some areas that has included restructuring and layoffs. Layoffs are never easy, and care was taken to be as humane as possible. All layoffs were done in compliance with union rules, including those rules on notice and severance packages,” Betzner said in a statement.

The university is making a $40 million reduction to its overall budget.
The union was told about the layoffs before Memorial Day and employees were not escorted out by security, according to Temple spokesman Ray Betzner.

"We don't use security people to escort folks who have been laid off outside of buildings," he said.

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